The Good, the Bad, and the Hugely Insightful Habits of App Users

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Partner Post - Oplytic Mobile Marketing and Engagement

Posted: November 22, 2016

Andrew Degenholtz brings some 20 years of experience as an active participant and innovator in magazine circulation and mobile app marketing to his current position as president of Oplytic, LLC, which he founded in 2009. The company offers a variety of tools to help its clients acquire engaged and paying mobile users. He is a member of the Alliance for Audited Media digital edition task force, created to develop best practices for acquisition of digital magazine subscribers.
There’s good news for mobile marketers: smartphone users who regularly download apps, average 3.5 per month. The bad news is almost half of all smartphone users don’t download any apps during that time. Put it all together and the average for all adult smartphone users equals two app downloads per month. That’s according to the most recent research compiled from comScore Media Metrix® Multi-Platform
Mobile family

Pushy Push Notifications

The data confirms advertising and marketing are driving app installs. With mobile users discovering new apps from both digital and traditional ads as well as websites, app acquisition is shifting from pull to push. Despite app store importance, push notifications have proven successful since the method proactively engages downloaders. Yet as users begin to download more apps, the quality of messaging must be prioritized over quantity to avoid push notification fatigue. That’s because 38% of users are now admitting they reject notifications, an increase from 31% in 2015. Fortunately, expert mobile analytics agencies like Oplytic can provide brands with customized strategies by measuring the behavioral outcome of specific campaigns and offering insights into recent demographic trends.

Mobile App Demographics

The latest statistics reveal a mere 13% of adult smartphone users account for more than half of monthly downloads. This concentrated demographic consists of 18 to 44 year-old men who are likely Hispanic from urban areas such as Houston, San Francisco, Miami and Los Angeles. Typically, they are into mobile gaming and sample five or more new apps a month. These users spend 45% of their app time with their most preferred app while tablet users spend a whopping 61% on their favorite app, and 87% on their top three..

Peeking into Peak App Habits

The heaviest downloaders on smartphones are 18 to 34 year-old Millennial males who prefer four or fewer screens with apps. Unlike older users, a growing number of Millennial men organize their apps into folders. While this statistic is up by 8% from last year, seven in 10 of them still keep their most used app on their home screen or in a friction-free location that’s one click away. Only one or fewer in 10 keep their most used app in a folder due to the scarcity of space on a smartphone home screen. Three out of four adult smartphone users customize which apps appear on their home screen.

Other App Habits

Baby Boomers are six times more likely to use both hands to operate their smartphones opposed to Millennials who are more comfortable handling (and multitasking on) their device with one hand. Regardless of age, single-handed smartphone users prefer positioning their apps within thumb reach. While this data may seem trivial, having a hand on habitual app user action, great and small, points to savvier strategies for mobile marketers..

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